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Charlie Hatton
Brookline, MA



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Howdy, friendly reading person!
I'm on a bit of a hiatus right now, but only to work on other projects -- one incredibly exciting example being the newly-released kids' science book series Things That Make You Go Yuck!
If you're a science and/or silliness fan, give it a gander! See you soon!

Please Be Patient… We’re Experiencing Ocular Difficulties

The audience is slobbering.

Hey there.

I’m afraid that I have a bit of a problem here.

I can’t see. Which makes it awfully hard to type.

(Not impossible, obviously, but much, much harder.)

Well, I suppose not being able to see at all would make writing very difficult, indeed. Proofreading, at the very least, would be most challenging.

But I can see ‘at all’; I just can’t see ‘very well’.

You see (even if I can’t), I just lost a contact lens. So while my vision is about as good as ever through my right eye, old lefty is on a blurry vacation. And that makes it rather difficult to focus. Everything has a hazy indistinct edge surrounding it, including each of these letters that you’re reading. Rather inconvenient when you’re trying to type them out in some semblance of comprehensibility.

So, first of all, I don’t think I’ll be writing much today. There’s just too much chance that I’ll accidentally spell ‘shot’ with an ‘i’, or ‘duck’ with an ‘f”, and not notice it.

(Or, given the way my blog entries usually go, vice versa.)

And I can’t stand typos. I’m sure there are a few already lying around the blog somewhere, but I don’t know about them. If I see them, they’re dead, ’cause I hate ’em. But if they can manage to avoid me, then they’ve got a shot at survival.

(I play the same game with bugs around the house. They can feel free to hang around, as long as they stay out of sight. But bite me, or sting me, or even buzz annoyingly around my head, and they’re toast. I can only be pushed so far by petulant invertebrates. Come to think of it, all of the above applies to telemarketers, too. Hey, and department store clerks. It’s a universal rule! Cool!)

Anyway, where was I? Ah, typing, and the high standards to which I hold this blog.

(Yeah, can’t you tell?)

So, I’m not going to have much for you until I find this lens, or another one just like it. My backup set apparently didn’t survive the move to the new house, which is unfortunate. I don’t remember making a conscious decision to throw them out, but maybe I did. Or maybe my wife did, or my dog ate them when I wasn’t looking. In any case, I don’t see them around here. Which may be simply a result of my current condition — if my backup lens case is on my left side, and more than eight inches from my frickin’ nose, then I’m not going to see it.

(Well, I might see it, but it’s unlikely that I’ll recognize it. I’ll probably think it’s an egg, or a pack of gum, or something. My eyesight is really bad, I’m afraid. As a matter of fact, my laughably poor eyesight is number three on my Top Ten List of Reasons Why I’m Glad I Wasn’t Born a Caveman. Care to see the rest?

  1. I don’t know what wine to serve with mastodon.
  2. No showers until it rains. Everyone would have that ground-in funk stank. You know, like France, without the parfum.
  3. My wife has short hair. What would I pull her around with?
  4. My dog would be five feet tall and weigh two hundred pounds. And scheming with several of her closest friends to try and eat me.
  5. I’d have to wear animal skins. PETA would be all over my ass.
  6. We’d have to keep a fire burning non-stop. And second-hand smoke is so annoying.
  7. I’m not really a fan of clubbing people over the head. Unless they’re telemarketers, of course.
  8. I can’t see without contact lenses. Which means I’d either die by falling into a tar pit, or trying to hump a woolly mammoth.
  9. I’d have to live in a cave. A cave! Can you imagine how bad the cable reception would be?
  10. Beer wouldn’t be invented for several thousand more years. Who wants to live in a world without beer?)

Okay, lost my place again. Where the hell was I? Ah, contact lenses.

Frankly, I’d like to get the Lasik surgery, or whatever they’re calling it now, and just get it the hell over with. I’ve got gas-permeable lenses, which are relatively rigid, and can’t be worn overnight.

(Okay, they can, but I don’t recommend it. I’ve tried it a couple of times, and I wake up feeling like someone funneled honey under my eyelids while I was sleeping. Ick.)

But the surgery’s kind of expensive, and I’m still not sure they know what’s going to happen twenty years down the road. I’m just waiting for their patients’ eyes to start deflating suddenly, and just leak out of their heads after a few years post-op. That would put a bit of a damper on things, wouldn’t it? ‘Um, yeah, I think I’m happier jammin’ my fingers in there a couple of times a day. At least I don’t have to worry about my eyes bursting like a damned balloon. Thanks just the same.

But that’s crazy talk, I’m sure. (What else would you expect?) The bigger risks — though relatively small — are that the surgery would get botched, and I’d end up blind in one eye, or with a big laser scar across my cheek.

(Hey, who knows when you’re gonna have to sneeze?)

Or that the procedure wouldn’t ‘take’, and I’d have to go back to contacts in ten years, or five, or three. And for a few grand per eye, that’s not shit that I want to deal with. I’ll pony up the cash if I’m sure the docs won’t screw it up, and that I can — deliberately, this time — throw away all my old contact lenses for good. But I haven’t done my homework yet to know how real the risks are.

(And I can’t do it now — I can barely friggin’ read with one contact. Bitches!)

So, I’d better get this taken care of. I’ll head off in the morning to a lens place, and see what they can do for me. I’m crossing my fingers that they can provide same-day service, because one of my volleyball leagues starts tomorrow night. And besides the dubious chances I have of driving to the gym with one eye, there’s also the game to be played. And I’ve got no depth perception to speak of right now, which is just a hand-engraved invitation for the ball to *bop!* me right in the nose. Which happens often enough as it is, without going in with a disadvantage.

So if I can’t get a new lens tomorrow, I’ll have quite a conundrum on my hands. The team’s short-handed this week as it is — would it be better for me to miss it altogether, or to come ‘short-eyed’, risking personal injury and vehicular damage just to play a game? Yeah, you’re right — when I put it that way, it’s pretty clear, huh? I’ve definitely got to play. There’s just too much danger and adventure involved to miss out on that. Maybe I’ll even up the stakes, and take out my other contact. Um, wait, no. Never mind — if I did that, I wouldn’t even be able to find my damned car, much less drive it. Truly, I’m a blind man trapped in a contact-wearer’s body.

(Or something. But not that, probably, because that didn’t really make any damned sense. Maybe not being able to see is affecting my brain, too.)

Anyway, I think that’s all for me. All of this one-eye concentrating is giving me a headache.

(Honestly, how do pirates do this all the time?)

Hopefully, tomorrow, I’ll have my lenses in place, and my brain snapped back in position, and all will be back to normal.

(Okay, fine — ‘normal‘. Did you really have to make me quote it? Bastards.)

And if not — well, then you’ll get another one-eyed, half-witted post.

But I sincerely hope that’s not the case. I’m sure this post is littered with typos, and not being able to catch them all bugs the piss out of me. In fact, the whole situation’s starting to get under my skin. To put it most forcefully:

This is duckin’ bullshot.

I’m sorry you had to see that. But I sure as hell wish that I could.

Permalink  |  2 Comments



2 Responses to “Please Be Patient… We’re Experiencing Ocular Difficulties”

  1. shelley says:

    How many fingers am I holding up?

    Y’know, I’d tell you that I really feel for ya, Charlie, but you wouldn’t be able to read it anyway. So I won’t say that.

  2. RRaccoon says:

    When you go in for the yey surgery they can give you a little pill to take the edge off. Then they put eye drops in that numb your eyes so that you don’t mind what they do next. Which is use an anti-eyelash-curler (ask your wife) to keep the lids open. It’s freaky but not painful at all.

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